I had request for cupcakes this weekend. They had to be good for breakfast (muffins) and have banana in them. I didn’t want to make a muffin, so I stuck with a cupcake recipe and planned to go light on the frosting. I made two attempts (two full attempts, but a total of three different recipes) and I am not 100% happy with any of them. I will print the best of the recipe bases, but the base recipe needs work. The cupcakes tasted yummy, but the texture was too dense, hence why it needs work.

The combination most appropriate for breakfast is the pecan-cinnamon. The yummiest (in my book anyway) was the macadamia-white chocolate. I didn’t like the pistachio so much. I don’t blame it on the pistachio, but on the recipe…

Mise En Place for Fillings
I made a few flavor combinations – toasted pecan and cinnamon, macadamia nut and white chocolate, and pistachio and cardamom.

1/3 cup pecans, toasted 5 minutes at 350 degrees, chopped
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup macadamia nuts, chopped
1/4 cup white chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup pistachios, shelled & chopped
1 teaspoon cardamom

1. Prepare all the fillings and set aside.

Banana Cupcakes
makes 22-24 cupcakes / 350 degree oven

3 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 medium bananas
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla

1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
2. With a blender or food processor, blend banana and buttermilk until the banana is broken up.
3. In another bowl, combine banana/buttermilk, eggs, vegetable oil, and vanilla.
4. Fold dry mixture into the wet mixture.
5. Divide batter into three bowls. In one bowl, fold in toasted pecans and cinnamon. In the second bowl, fold in macadamia nuts and white chocolate. In the third bowl, fold in pistachios and cardamom.
6. Scoop out into cupcake papers.
7. Bake at 350 degree oven for ~20-22 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean (start checking after 20 minutes).

baked cupcakes

Thick Cream Cheese Frosting

6 ounces or 3/4 package of Philly cream cheese
1/2 stick butter
4-5 cups sifted powdered sugar

1. Bring butter to room temperature by letting it sit out for 1 or 2 hours.
2. Sift powdered sugar into a bowl or onto parchment.
3. Beat butter and cheese at medium speed until creamy.
4. Add half of the sugar. Beat until combined.
5. Gradually add remaining sugar (more if you have to) until you get to the consistency and sweetness you like. For this recipe, I was going for a very thick frosting.

scooping frosting

1. Scoop a bit of frosting on to each cooled cupcake.
2. Smooth frosting into a thin layer.
3. Top with caramelized banana disks, white chocolate dipped macadamia nuts, whatever you please…

I don’t have many pictures as I had a guest over while I was baking. My guest was a fellow baking enthusiast who I met through the blog. She is a caterer and cooking instructor in the bay area. She is mid-remodel and wanted to see what I had done. She brought delicious Vietnamese sandwiches. It was great to share tips. I am going to try some out in the weeks to come.

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